View Full Version : For Mandolin Players...

03-11-2013, 06:50 PM
:music: I played (tried) mandolin on and off for a few years. I play bass and ukulele (my first love-what the heck, I can have two) and during my ventures with the mandolin, I discovered Martin mandolin strings. I have given up mandolin (to hard for me to keep up / learn 3 different instruments) and sold off the two I owned.

To me, Martin was not my first choice for mandolin strings but bought a pack last year and put them on my Epiphone mando. I was very shocked! Very warm and somewhat "woody" sound. I bought another set and put them on my Eastman 815. I was very happy with the sound. I bought a third set to have on hand.

Anyway I say all that to say this...I have a new and unopened set of Martin 80/20 Bronze Mandolin Strings. This will be my 1000th post on this great website and I will give this set of mandolin strings away for free to a uke playing, mandolin loving Brother or Sister! I know, not much but hopefully the person getting this will be turned on to some great strings and maybe grow to like them like I did. Be the first person to PM me with your name and address and they are yours! I will ship for free too. :music:

03-12-2013, 02:20 AM
That's a lovely thing to do. :)

I've tinkered with a mandolin. All those four finger chords sure tear my fingers up!

03-12-2013, 07:21 PM
Yeah, the Bluegrass "chop" chords are a bugger. I love the sound of the mandolin but prefer the happy sound of the uke. I am a hack on the uke and bass but have a good time. I just needed to devote more time to the uke and bass and give up being a hack on the mandolin...;)

04-12-2013, 12:30 PM
I love the Mando Chop on my uke!!!!

04-24-2013, 04:17 AM
Strings on their way to Tennessee!

10-18-2013, 09:17 AM
uke552, my family are obsessive musicians. I have didgeridoos, native american flutes, pan flutes, acoustic guitars, ukuleles, and soon a mandolin. Did I mention I'm learning three languages right now too? :) Seriously though, if we humans are capable of learning some 30+ languages you shouldn't have any problem with learning a few instruments at once. I'm a lefty and have to reverse everything I see. Now you'll have to find another instrument to fill that void that I know you have. Maybe a dulcimer?

11-04-2013, 03:24 PM
I have a Kentucky mandolin- Fairly good quality that I got from the guitar center back in L.A. in the mid-90's for a song,
because it wasn't a real popular instrument there at the time.

Never played it much, because mostly working on guitar and keyboards then, and even banjo-
and when you're first learning the different instrument chords do get into a confusing "crosstalk"

I've always loved the ringing unison sound, and even though I like bluegrass, I always thought the instrument loses a lot of it's character picked that fast. Bluegrass doesn't let the long echoed resonance out of it much.
Even took the pickguard off to let the resonance through.
I broke a couple of fingers on my left hand way back, and so then through the years,
I mostly ignored the mandolin because my hands seem to big and I didnt' have the time.

Eventually I even tried to sell it but got no takers.
The availability of cheap mandolins has really increased in the time since I bought it.
Finally, when I got into DAGDA and celtic on guitar I decided, "what the heck" and tuned the mandolin to "chord"

it's not much range either- D-G-D-G I think it is- 4 strings are in D and four in G

But it sure makes it easier to play- and get some melodies out of- even play along with bluegrass or celtic or any style
I like to get the bottom strings ringing a bass tone or pattern and then play a simple melody on the top
Tuned this way I think it's one of the easiest instruments to improvise on

It's not the way the instrument developed in the modern world, but it sounds great, and now I actually play it again once and awhile.
Still has all the original strings 20 years later. :)

Jim Yates
10-05-2014, 08:38 AM
Uke552, I also own an Eastman mandolin, a 605, not as fancy as yours, but I love it. I also have a Washburn 2 point oval hole mandolin. I have been using d'Adderio strings, but may just give the Martins a try next time.
8 years ago, I was playing mandolin in a bluegrass band. I was using my Washburn and realised that I needed something a little louder, probably an f-hole. I went to The Twelfth Fret Music Store in Toronto after seeing a Gibson A model with f-holes advertised on their web site. When I went in the store, I saw some Eastman mandos hanging on the wall. I had never heard of them, so I took the Gibson, a 615 F-style Eastman and a 605 A style Eastman into the back room and played the same thing on each mandolin. The Eastman 605 blew the other two away and it was the least expensive of the three. I really liked the looks of the F style and had enough money to buy it, but the sound of the 605 convinced me to buy it. Eight years later and I don't regret it a bit.

I tune it in standard GDAE tuning, but I do have a TC Octave mandolin that I tune GDAD.